PM wants tour cancelled

Australian Prime Minister John Howard has spoken of the dilemma between government intervention in sports and boycotting the Zimbabwe tour.

“I am jammed between my distaste for the government getting involved in something like this and my even greater distaste for giving a propaganda victory to Robert Mugabe,” he told an Australian radio station.

“Obviously if there is a way legitimately that the tour can be cancelled and there not be an exposure by Cricket Australia to any fine, then we’ll go down that path.

“How long can the international cricket community – not just Australia – go on doing things that give aid and comfort to somebody who has thus far been totally impervious to any entreaties?”

The Australian government has strongly weighed into the touring debate, even offering to pay the large fine Cricket Australia would incur, should the cancel the tour from the ICC.

There is also heavy speculation that the government will ban the tour from taking place. If this were the case, Cricket Australia might be let off the hook by the ICC, as the boycott would be out of their hands.

An announcement from the Australian Government is expected to be made today.

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